As the weather warms up, the mosquitoes return in numbers. Naturally, we take precautions to protect ourselves from irritating bites and disease, but what about our pets? Mosquitoes transmit heartworm disease and just one bite can be deadly for your dog or cat.

Heartworm LifecycleHow do dogs & cats get heartworm disease?

  • The mosquito becomes infected by feeding on an animal infected with the disease.
  • When the infected mosquito then bites another animal, microscopic heartworm larvae are deposited around the bite wound.
  • If a dog or cat has been bitten and is not on a heartworm preventative,these heartworm larvae develop and mature inside the animal causing damage to the heart and lungs which can eventually lead to death.
  • Heartworm disease is present throughout mainland Australia and is unlikely to ever be eliminated.

Definitely a case of prevention is better than cure.

  • Heartworm disease is potentially fatal. Signs of infection include coughing, lack of energy or weight loss.
  • Removing an established heartworm infection is difficult. It can be potentially dangerous for the animal, and costly to pet owners. The best way to prevent heartworm disease is keep your pet on a heartworm preventative all year round.
  • Heartgard Plus ChewablesFor dogs, prevent heartworm disease with Heartgard³º® Plus* – the tasty real beef chew that dogs love. Heartgard³º® Plus is highly effective at preventing heartworm disease, is safe to use in all breeds of dogs as young as 6 weeks of age and Heartgard³º® Plus may be given to dogs of positive, negative or unknown heartworm status.
  • For cats, Revolution and Advocate are two of the leading monthly flea and worming spot-on treatments that also include heartworm protection.
  • Your veterinarian may also provide your pet with an annual heartworm prevention shot when they have their yearly vaccination.  Generally this can be given to puppies once they have reached 12 months of age.
  • Advantix Flea & Tick prevention for dogs also contains a mosquito repellent - so couple this with a monthly or annual heartworm preventative and you should have all your bases covered!

** Information sourced with permission from Just For Pets 2013.  Pets Unleashed is a member of the Just for Pets buying group.